I have been absent from posting for roughly the last month. I am sorry I have been away and distracted.
July is a brand new month and a brand new start. Time to once again pick myself up, dust myself off, and set to it.
Actually I was thinking this morning that every day, every moment is a brand new start. There is always the potential to start again, to renew a friendship, to embark on a journey, to start a grand endeavor, to heal a past wound, to rekindle a relationship-- whatever.
What stands in the way? What creates blank page syndrome? What kills desire and good intention? What are the obstacles to be overcome?
I have had a number of disappointments over the last several months. Actually the last few years have been rough for me, as they have for a huge portion of the population. Currently, to help me learn from the experiences of these disappointing moments and life events and to keep persevering, I have been reading a book about shamanism. One chapter talks about the challenges to overcome to accomplish goals. The listed challenges are: ignorance, outside obstacles/limitations that others impose, confusion, procrastination, anger, fear, and doubt. It occurred to me as I was reading that 6 out of 7 of these are potentially in the control of the person trying to accomplish the goal-- and the seventh challenge is subject to the ingenuity and problem solving capability of the person.
Learning and being willing to learn can overcome ignorance.
Contemplation and an ordering of priorities can eliminate confusion.
Following Nike's advice and "just doing it" can blow through procrastination. I read a brilliant article not long ago that talked about how frequently human beings pause and talk themselves out of starting projects, exercise programs, and more when if they just begin, they can do it. Lately, even if I am totally demoralized, I have been making it a point of doing one small thing to add to my efforts to accomplish my life goals. For me this is a matter of intent. The way I figure it, even on the worse days, I can set one small task and "just do it."
Anger. Anger is a tricky emotion. It takes time and energy to work through it, but really anger is a choice.
I have been thinking about fear a great deal lately. Fear has a positive side. A person can use their fear, it can be a motivator. Fear is a warning system. It can also be a clue to determining what a person's priorities are, where obstacles might lie, and more. When fear stands in the way of accomplishing tasks, examining the nature of the fear can lend information for problem solving. I don't think fear should be feared. It should be embraced for what it can tell.
Doubt can be countered by creating a clearer vision of the goal and breaking goals into smaller steps. I may not be able to become the greatest writer of this century. I can write a thousand words a day that will cumulate to become a novel. I can make a goal to seek out others to critique my work and learn to communicate better. I can persist in submitting my novel for publication while I start on the next novel.
The only item on the list of seven obstacles that is not in direct control of the person setting the goal is that of the obstacles that other people put in the way. I can submit a novel to be published and an editor can reject it. I can interview for a job and the employer may hire someone else. With this item there are still options: I can submit the novel to another publisher; I can seek feedback on my interviewing; and I can try again.
For today, July 1, I want to celebrate what a wonderful thing it is that every moment has the potential to be a new beginning. This is such a wonderful gift from the Universe.